Mississippi Gives Patient Access to FDA-Approved Cannabis Medicines

Mississippi Gov. Tate Reeves has signed a bill into law giving patients access to FDA-approved cannabis medications, though the governor said he opposes efforts to make cannabis “mainstream.”

Full story after the jump.

Mississippi Gov. Tate Reeves (R) has signed into law a bill allowing patients to obtain Food and Drug Administration-approved cannabis-derived medications, Marijuana Moment reports.

In a tweet, Reeves said he remains opposed to efforts making cannabis “mainstream.”

“That said – helping people with safe treatments should not be off the table,” he wrote, adding that the measure will help “kids like Brady and Brianna with a rare form of epilepsy to get FDA-approved treatment.”

The tweet featured photos of the children.

The bill’s signing comes less than a month before Mississippi voters will decide whether to legalize medical cannabis in the state – and with two competing measures to choose from.

One, I65, is the product of a campaign led by Mississippians for Compassionate Care. The activists collected more than 105,000 signatures from each of the state’s five congressional districts in order to put the constitutional amendment to voters. The proposal outlines 20 “debilitating conditions” that would qualify a patient for the program.

The other, I65A, would require state lawmakers to enact a comprehensive medical cannabis program. That plan, according to Ballotpedia, would only medical cannabis access for terminally ill patients, require pharmaceutical-grade cannabis products, and leave tax rates, possession limits, and other details to the legislature.

The question on ballots will appear as a two-step process. Voters who choose ‘either measure’ want either I65 or I65A to pass and allow medical cannabis use by qualified patients. The voter must then choose their preferred version.

Voting ‘neither measure’ signals the voter is against both but can then proceed to the second question to choose their preferred version in the event the ‘either’ option gets more votes.

Jamie Grantham, communications director for Mississippians for Compassionate Care, told Marijuana Moment that she was “glad” the bill will help Brady and Brianna but I65 “will help thousands of families across the state.”

An FM3 Research poll from September found 81 percent of Mississippi likely voters support the reforms, including 89 percent of Democrats, 82 percent of independents, and 76 percent of Republicans.

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